Since we were spending the day driving to 83 different places he decided to bring his DS in the car. Unless where we're going is over an hour away, I normally don't let them bring anything valuable in the car because I'm not a big fan of having my windows smashed out for a $125 toy. But considering the fact that we weren't going to be in any one place for an extended period of time, always going to be parked in visible areas and that there are about 35 different hiding spots in the minivan, I didn't say anything and let him bring it.
When we pulled into the parking lot at Noodles & Co. for lunch, I was going to remind him to make sure that his DS was hidden out of sight but then decided not to because I figured he'd say something like "Really? You think I should? Well, duh, I'm not stupid. Stop reminding me. I know already." and since we had been having a fairly smooth morning, why start a fight now? As soon as we ordered and sat down, though, he looked at me and said: "Oh crap. I left my DS on the seat. Someone should go move it."
"You're kidding me, right? I was going to tell you when we got out to make sure and stick it on the floor or something, but didn't because I figured you'd remember." I knew I should have ordered a beer with my pan noodles.
"You were not going to say that. You're a liar. That was such a lie." Yes, you read that right. My kid just called me a liar. I may have avoided giving him the opportunity to say something crappy to me the first time, but this one more than made up for it.
I grabbed my keys and walked -- okay, more like stomped -- out to the car and if I hadn't left my purse at the table I probably would have just jumped in and drove away. I also resisted the urge to drive back and forth over his DS case and instead stuck it somewhere that was out of sight: in the back of the van, where he couldn't reach it.
When I went back to our table our food was just arriving and everyone was silent. Zach knew he was in trouble so he grunted an apology but otherwise just sat there and ate while I composed a lecture in my head. Something I realize is that when one kid is in trouble, the other two manage to pull out good behavior like I've never seen because their goodness really stands out against the other kid's misdeeds. They also know that if they're the slightest bit bad when I'm already mad about something else, then utensils may start flying through the air.
After a few minutes of carb and Sriracha consumption, I finally managed to tell him that what he said was really craptastic and that maybe he should have used the "say things to yourself silently before you say it out loud" tip I gave him a couple weeks ago. I told him that I didn't remind him about his stupid DS earlier because I didn't want to deal with his smart-ass remark, but I ended up hearing a much worse smart-ass remark that also accused me of lying. And then I told him to not make a sound and let me be mad for five more minutes and then I would be fine.
Sure enough, after about five minutes we were all back to normal and having fun watching the mom at the table next to us try to carry on an adult conversation with her friend while simultaneously trying to stop her four-year-old son from throwing all of his mac & cheese on the floor while laying on his chair pretending to be Superman. At one point she said: "Austin, sweetie, you're making a big messy mess and mommy wants you to sit nicey-nice. Can you do that for mommy? Mommy will get you a cookie if you do." I wanted to tell her "Yeah, well, in ten years he might sit nicey-nice, but he'll also call you a lying liar!" but my five minutes of anger was up and plus, from the looks of her kid and how she's dealing with him, being called a liar will be the least of her issues.